Glossary: C

Glossary of American English Hacker Theocratese

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=== C ===

Caesar, Caesar's law
The authority and laws of worldly governments. (Mat 22:21; Rom 13:1, 2) <<I'll be late to work tomorrow because Caesar requires that I get my driver's license renewed.>>
Every year the Watch Tower Society publishes a picture calendar that is different from those available from worldly sources in that it does not mark Sundays or traditional worldly holidays in red. Instead, each Monday is marked with the Theocratic Ministry School Bible reading for the week, and Bible reading assignments for several days preceding the Memorial and the Memorial date itself are indicated. In the past the pictures have portrayed scenes from Bible lands, and in recent years collections of pictures of branch offices and people engaged in the preaching work in many lands have been featured.
The westernmost state of the USA, a place of great wealth, also of great poverty, crime, and immorality, where things are generally done a little differently from the whole rest of the world. One wise guy surmised: <<God populated California by lifting up the east coast and allowing all the nuts to roll in.>> <<Well, Milton, I hear some brothers in California have been using live elephants in demonstration parts. Sounds like we'd better send out another investigative committee to find out what on earth is going on.>>
A person who is visited in the field ministry. <<The man we saw in the grocery store is one of my calls.>>
call book
A notebook of names, addresses, and information regarding contacts with persons we encounter in {field service} who show interest in the {Kingdom message}.
Calvary, cavalry
These two words are often mispronounced, one as the other. Calvary is the Latinized name used in the {King James} and {Douay} Versions of the Bible for the place outside Jerusalem where Jesus was impaled, called Golgotha (Skull Place) in NW. (Joh 19:17) A cavalry is a mobile army unit, especially one that travels by horseback. <<As for me, here I am letting the hearts of the Egyptians become obstinate, that they may go in after them and that I may get glory for myself by means of Pharaoh and all his military forces, his war chariots and his cavalrymen.>> (Exo 14:17)
Camille syndrome
A melodramatic overreaction to stress that can best be described as wrist-to-forehead, often accompanied by a {heaving of sighs}, and an upward rolling of the eyes, a distinctly feminine gesture indicating stress and exasperation. <<What!? You're having another elders' meeting after the Service Meeting again tonight?>> Accompanied by manifestation of symptoms. The name Camille comes from a character in a now-dated opera or play (I can't remember which) who suffered a pitifully slow death, three whole acts worth, from consumption.
campaign, service campaign
A program outlined each month in {Our Kingdom Ministry}, detailing publications to be featured in {public witnessing} for a given period of time, usually a month. <<The first part of each calendar year used to be devoted to the Watchtower subscription campaign.>>
See {baptismal candidate}.
Capital Letters
Descriptive phrases used in a title-like fashion to describe Jehovah are frequently seen capitalized, e.g., Universal Sovereign, Grand Instructor, Creator, Principal One, King, the Giver of Life. Sometimes the same practice is followed in reference to Jesus Christ. <<He is David's Permanent Heir.>> [w78 3/1 26] This seems to follow the practice of Isaiah 9:6 where Jesus is prophetically called ``Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace'', all descriptive phrases used titularly. Writers should use this technique sparingly.

Occasionally even He, His, and Him are capitalized in mid-sentence, as is sometimes found in the sanctimonious writings of Christendom's {religionists}. In the version 5.1 of this Glossary I reported that it is not consistently done one way or the other in the {WTB&TS} publications. However, a reader observes that the Society uses capitalization when two or more individuals are mentioned in the same sentence, and the pronoun or descriptive phrase refers to the superior person. <<Jehovah is happy, and he wants his servants to be happy.>> In this instance, there is no reason to capitalize he or him, because no other person is mentioned in the sentence. <<Jehovah is Jesus' father, and He created him.>> In this case, He must be capitalized to make the distinction between Jesus and Jehovah clear. Jehovah is the greater of the two. <<Jesus and Paul both witnessed extensively, but He is our exemplar.>> Jesus is the greater of the two individuals in the sentence. He is capitalized to make clear that Jesus, not Paul, is our exemplar. Although the previous example is made up, see Exodus 8:12 for an instance where the practice is applied in the {New World Translation}. On the other hand, we never use the {archaic} pseudo-formalisms thee, thou, thy, and thine.

car group
A group of persons assigned to car pool together to an assigned field service {territory}. <<I already have seven in my car group, so I can't take any more.>>
cat publisher
A Briticism meaning a publisher who does only meoooweerr (my hour) in service. This one has to be explained to Americans, because we never substitute me for my as do some Brits. But on this side of the pond street kids commonly substitute ``Yo!'' for ``Hey you!''
1. Short for Roman Catholic, a member of the sect of Christendom claiming the greatest numbers and age. Its leadership is centered around the {pope} who has traditionally resided at Vatican City in Rome since the earliest times. <<``Good morning sir; are you a Bible reader?'' ``No, I'm sorry. I'm Catholic.''[48]>> 2. Catholic can be used in a general sense to mean comprehensive, universal, broad, general, or ordinary, in which case it is written in lower case. <<Having had little exposure, he has catholic tastes in music.>>
[48] Some persons have been tempted to reply ``I'm sorry you're Catholic, too.''
AMOOFL for {Congregation Book Study}.[49] In my experience it is used much more often as an abbreviation in written form than in speech. <<Would someone please resend the email with the scriptures for this week's CBS? I inadvertently flushed it.>>
[49] Also for Columbia Broadcasting System, one of the largest American TV networks.
CD is a standard AMOOFL for ``compact disk'', and CD-ROM for ``compact disk read-only memory'', small disks capable of storing huge amounts of digital data. Recorded music on CD has made the old twelve-inch vinyl LP disks so obsolete that most stores that sell recordings don't even stock them anymore. A CD can store any kind of data, not just recorded sound. Now they are being used as read-only hard disks on computers. A single disk can hold a whole library of information, or an encyclopedia, in mixed format, including graphics, animation, and sound.

The most important CD produced to date is the Watchtower Library 1995 Edition. This volume contains, on a single 5-inch disk, all the information contained on several shelves in most Witness homes, including the New World Translation Reference Bible, Insight on the Scriptures, the Index 1930-1995, every volume of The Watchtower from 1950-1995, every Awake! volume from 1970-1995, Yearbooks 1970-1996, Our Kingdom Ministry back to 1970, hard-cover books back to 1963, brochures, booklets, and tracts. Piano recordings of the songs in the Kingdom Songbook, the collection of the {Kingdom songs} sung at meetings, are now available on CDs for congregation use.

See {BCE}.
Cedar Point syndrome
A questioning attitude concerning the fulfillment of certain prophecies. Several parallel prophecies relating to events in the twentieth century find their fulfillments in a remarkable series of conventions the {Watch Tower Society} presented in the 1920s, and their aftereffects. It has proven to be difficult for some persons ungrounded in foundation teachings and unsteady in their ways to swallow some of the explanations that have been dished out by the {faithful and discreet slave}. (Jam 1:5-8; 2Pe 3:16) One {city overseer} coined the {neologism} Cedar Point syndrome to describe these symptoms of spiritual indigestion.
The brother presiding over a meeting or committee, such as the brother who hosts the {Public Meeting} and introduces the {Watchtower Study}. <<The presiding overseer serves as chairman at meetings of the body of elders.>> <<The district overseer is chairman of the circuit assembly program.>> <<Brother Stern will be the {judicial committee} chairman.>>
Chairman's Committee
A rotating subcommittee of the {Governing Body}. Its membership consists of the current chairman, the preceding chairman, and the one next in line to be chairman.
chewing gum
The stuff that some parents fail to prevent their kids from leaving on the carpet and under the seats in some {Kingdom Halls}. I am told that in United Kingdom it is fingernail clippings rather than gum that is found. Yuck!
The Bible regards children as ``an inheritance from Jehovah'', and a ``reward, like arrows in the hand of a mighty man''. (Psa 127:3-5) This is true when they turn out well. Others regard them as mindless blobs, and self-centered eating machines, until they reach the age of reason. Jehovah's Witnesses follow the scriptural model in training children in spiritual matters. Fathers have the primary responsibility in this. When the family attends congregation meetings, the children attend all the same events, including at assemblies and conventions, that the adults do, and normally sit with their parents. This practice is radically different from that commonly followed in {Christendom}. (Compare {Sunday school}.)
A trained group of singers that sings musical selections in church services. Many mainstream churches have become gaudy theaters for religious entertainment, with music taking center stage. Even tiny churches usually have at least a choir that is given prominence at various times in the proceedings. Although music unquestionably has a place in true worship, music at congregation meetings of Jehovah's Witnesses is rightly limited to group participation in the singing of {Kingdom songs}. The object in such singing is not artistic or technical achievement, or pseudo-religious emotional titillation, but to focus on the spiritual content of the song lyrics, with the sole objective of building appreciation for matters related to true worship.[50]
[50] Preaching to the choir means attempting to convince listeners who are already believers about some matter, and therefore a waste of time. This expression doesn't carry the same weight among Jehovah's Witnesses. In fact, it seems like it might be a good and necessary thing to do.
A transliteration of the Greek word that is the equivalent for the Hebrew word rendered in most translations as {Messiah}, meaning ``anointed one''. The Bible refers to others as being anointed by God, but Christ as an official title belongs only to Jesus in his Messianic role. Once a person in service noted that I referred at least twice to ``Christ Jesus'' rather than ``Jesus Christ'' and wondered why I inverted the order, and which was correct. Because Christ is a title, not a part of Jesus' name, although Jesus Christ is the more common ordering, either way is correct, just as one might properly say either ``President Clinton'' or ``Mr. Clinton, the President''.
1. The realm of countries in the world where {apostate} Christianity is the official or predominant religion. 2. The people who are members of Christendom's churches. <<Christendom dismisses God's personal name as unimportant.>>
A disciple of Jesus Christ. Many persons have made the claim of being Christ's disciples, but Jesus himself said he would disown those calling him Lord if they did not do the will of his father. (Mat 7:21-23) The founder of Christianity was above all other things a witness of his heavenly father Jehovah. (Rev 1:5) His true followers today are likewise. (1Pe 2:21)
Christmas [issue, edition]
Every year the Society publishes at least one issue of The Watchtower or Awake! in December that has a cover feature that {flames} Christmas, dubbed by some the ``annual Christmas edition''. <<I wonder how many unsuspecting sentimentalists from Christendom's churches who happen to acquire the Christmas edition are thrown for a loop when the see their favorite holiday impaled and served up on a spit by the end of the first page.>>
The translation given to the Greek word'a in many English versions of the Bible. In NW it is consistently translated as ``congregation''. Sometimes people in Christendom use the word to refer to the religious organization they are affiliated with as an institution, often capitalized. <<Because of the lack of seminarians the Church recently began allowing the ordination of women and homosexuals.[51]>> But in the mind of many people in Christendom the church refers to a building used for religious services. <<Did you hear that the church burned to the ground?>> <<To persons in our country, a church is like a telephone booth from where you can call God.>> However, in every case the Bible's use of ecclesia refers to people, i.e., to the Christian congregation, either as a whole, or to a particular group of them. (Act 13:1) Therefore Jehovah's Witnesses always refer to their local centers of true worship as {Kingdom Halls} and to the people who meet there by the term {congregation}. When Witnesses say church we always mean it in the same sense that is in common use in Christendom. <<The church is building a new bingo annex.>> When used in the institutional sense without a specifier as to which sect, the default implication is the Roman Catholic church. <<The Church's true degree of unity was well demonstrated by the youth rally coinciding with the visit of the pope to Colorado in the summer of 1993, an event that manifested all the dignity of a rap concert.[52]>>

[51] Added to the child molesters and revolutionary politicos, and soon to be joined by rapists and cannibals.

[52] It was a virtual festival of dissent.

NOTE: Often outsiders assume we observe the same usage as they do. Sometimes it is convenient to just let it slide rather than to make an issue over the differences. <<``You're very active in your church's outreach program,[53] aren't you?'' ``Yes.''>> We know what they mean, so this is an accurate answer.

[53] Work of going from door to door.
A grouping of local congregations under each {branch organization}, normally assigned together because of relative geographical closeness. Most circuits are made up of about 20 congregations, which the {circuit overseer} visits twice a year.
circuit assembly
An formerly biannual and now annual two-day gathering of all congregations in a {circuit} for a spiritually upbuilding program provided by the {Society}.
circuit overseer
An {elder} {appointed} by the {Society} to serve all the {congregations} in a {circuit}, traveling from week to week to visit each congregation in turn.
circuit servant [obs]
Former term for {circuit overseer}.
circuit work
The general term used to describe the life and activity of brothers serving as {circuit overseers}. It is likewise customarily applied to a circuit overseer's wife. <<Brother and Sister Nobed have been in circuit work for over 35 years.>>
The sum total of a number of related conditions. In the Truth one's circumstances impact the quantity of what he is able to do in serving Jehovah. <<Brother Footloose has determined that his circumstances now allow him to begin regular pioneering immediately. He is young, single, has a paid-for car, an excellent income from a part-time job, and modest living expenses. He also has a great love for the service and experience in scheduling from having auxiliary pioneered six times in the last year.>> On the other hand, some people allow their circumstances to be excuses for doing less. <<I'm sorry, I can't give my talk tomorrow because of my circumstances. My dog stubbed his toe last week and I have to stay home and take care of him.>> That the seventh game of the NBA finals will be televised that night is just an amazing coincidence that will make the pain and inconvenience of having to stay home from the meeting to nurse Barky easier to bear.
A quote from an external reference source. It is used especially in connection with Bible passages, and secondarily with quotations from the Society's literature. A citation may be quoted directly, or referred to by Bible book, chapter, and verses, or by volume, page, and paragraphs. <<In preparing for the Watchtower Study it is important to look up and understand the application of scriptures that are cited but not quoted.>>
city overseer
An {elder} {appointed} in cities where there is more than one {congregation}. He does not exercise jurisdiction, but is the focal point of certain communications from the {branch office}.
Some prophetic pictures in the Bible represent entire groups of people by a singular image. Thus we speak of the faithful and discreet slave class, the heavenly bride class, the earthly class, the Lazarus class, the rich-man class, the John class, the clergy class, the sheep class, the priestly class, the kingdom class, the laity class, the Jehonadab class, and so on. 2. [obs] Many years ago class was used rather than {meeting}.
class worker [obs]
Term used in the 1930s for {publisher}. (Compare {sharpshooter}.) [jv 717]
clergy, clergyman
1. A {class} of individuals in Christendom's apostate religions that has presumptuously declared itself to be distinguished by virtue of being more expert in matters of religious practice from the common masses of people known as the laity, and that has thereby dominated people, keeping them in ignorance and poverty. 2. The loathsome class of individuals that directly fulfills many Bible prophecies, including the ``man of lawlessness'' of 2 Thessalonians 2:3, 4. This group bears direct responsibility, more so than any other, for spreading false religious teachings and lies about God, for starting, supporting, and perpetuating the bloodiest wars in human history, and for being ringleaders in the persecution of true Christians throughout the earth and attempting to suppress and bring to an end their work of teaching people the good news about God and his wonderful purposes for mankind. This class is condemned in God's word to a future of everlasting destruction without any hope of future life. 3. A favorite target of Jehovah's Witnesses in their sport of {religion bashing}.[54] <<How many clergymen does it take to change a lightbulb? None. They just grow more accustomed to the dark.>>
[54] It is unquestionably true that individuals within this class are sincere persons with good qualities, but as long as they continue to support a religious system Jehovah has slated for destruction, they continue to bear community bloodguilt. Some from this class have even responded favorably to the Truth. In our area we have an exceptionally fine brother who did not learn the Truth until he had retired from serving as a Baptist minister for 35 years.
closing prayer
The prayer offered at the conclusion of a meeting. Brothers are generally free to say any appropriate thing in any public prayer, but we are advised to consider the occasion and purpose for the prayer being given. Concluding prayers might be more elaborate than an {opening prayer}, and might include praise to Jehovah, thanks for the meeting, brief comments on highlights of things learned, and requests in behalf of the worldwide brotherhood, and the work in general.

NOTE: The brother who gives the {public talk} is almost always asked to give the concluding prayer following the {Watchtower Study}. Although this practice seems to follow the protocol followed at assemblies, I have never seen in print that this is a requirement. If it is I would love it if someone would send me the reference. One reviewer in Europe said that this is not the practice in his country.

Common AMOOFL for {circuit overseer}. <<Why is it that the first night of the CO's visit every elder's brain turns to mush?[55]>>
[55] Answer: because rightly or wrongly, some elders view the CO's visit as some sort of inspection, where they personally are on judgment. This leads them to try and put on a dog and pony show, sometimes going to great lengths to do things they would never bother with under other circumstances.
Stimulating hot black liquid, consumed in great quantity by most hard-working Christians in the USA; the drug of choice for most any occasion. One CO calls it ``the elixer of life''. Perhaps an overstatement. A few Christians conscientiously abstain from coffee because it contains the drug caffeine.
colporteur [obs]
The original 19th century term for {full-time} preachers. <<In 1881, The Watch Tower published an article calling for 1,000 preachers to serve as colporteur evangelists.>>
coming into the Truth
The {experience} one has in making the transition from being a part of the world to making true Christianity a way of life for oneself. Most people who have come into the Truth as adults after having lived in the world will testify that this period was the highlight of their life. <<Once he grasped the teaching about why God allows wickedness, he came right into the Truth.>> (See {in the Truth}.)
Praise. In giving counsel we are trained always to give commendation where possible. (Compare [sg 11 par. 9].) One brother wisely observed that we should put a period following commendation so that it is not neutralized by counsel that follows. Notice the difference: <<We notice that you are doing well in getting to the Sunday meeting, but your Thursday attendance needs some work.>> How much better it would be to say <<You are doing well in getting to the Sunday meeting. Is there anything we can do to help you raise your Thursday attendance to the same level?>>
A statement made during a meeting by someone other than the person currently {presiding}, most frequently in response to a question asked by the conductor. (Heb 10:24)
common archaisms
Older English translations of the Bible, notably the {King James Version}, use formal pronouns, now considered archaic and sanctimonious, especially when used in prayers and addresses to God. The table that follows lists the most common of these and their meanings, along with a count of how many verses each one occurs in the King James translation:
    Word   Count  Meaning
    ----   -----  -------
    hath   1,840  third person singular present tense of ``have''
    saith  1,197  third person singular present tense of ``say''
    thee   2,655  objective case of ``thou''
    thine    818  thy, before a  word beginning with a vowel
    thou   3,835  the one addressed (you)
    thy    3,044  possessive of thou (your)
    ye     2,830  second person plural of ``you''

The Bible is no mere historical artifact. Hebrews 4:12 tells us that ``the word of God is alive and exerts power''. Thus the {New World Translation} of the Bible was translated originally into modern English. Naturally the forms shown in the table do not appear in the {publications}, prayers, meetings, or daily speech of true Christians.[56]

[56] Except in quotes from other sources.
An act of sharing. Most of Christendom's sects refer to the ceremony of partaking from communally shared bread and wine in commemoration of the death of Christ as ``Holy Communion''. Jehovah's Witnesses do not use this word to describe these proceedings. (See {Memorial}.)
1. An electronic device capable of assisting in the performance of almost any non-physical work imaginable. (Compare {PC}.) 2. A gadget widely believed by some to be a tool of the Devil, until they realized that the Society makes extensive use of them, following which many brothers in affluent countries rushed out to buy them. To paraphrase Jesus: <<No one that has used a computer wants a typewriter; for he says, ``The computer is nice.''[57] (Luk 5:39)>>
[57] A slight misapplication of the original.
An alphabetical index of principal words in a book. A Bible concordance is an enormously practical aid to finding scriptures. Even small print editions of the {New World Translation} have abbreviated concordances in them. In 1973, the Society published the Comprehensive Concordance for NW, containing all but the most common words such as a and the. Although amazingly useful as a Bible research tool, this publication is a prime candidate for the ``expensive publication most often found in homes with the shrink wrap still on it'' award. Concordances are still good to have around because of their portability, e.g., to carry on Bible studies. However, the power of a concordance pales into insignificance in comparison with a good lookup program on a computer.
confidential matters
Information that is private, and not to be shared with those who do not need to know it. The term is sometimes used, primarily by elders, to refer to the need to refrain from openly discussing such things with the wrong people. <<Brother Gutspiller was removed as an elder for confidential matters.>> He failed to maintain confidentiality. The example is not strictly grammatical, but it is used.
1. The entire collection of 144,000 {spiritual Israelites}, in heaven and on earth. (Compare Act 9:31; 1Co 15:9.) 2. All true worshipers of Jehovah as a collective entity, including {other sheep} and {unbaptized associates}. <<When we read about {persecution} of our brothers and sisters in other parts, it affects the whole congregation.>> (Also compare Act 20:28.) 3. Organized groups of Christians who regularly meet together at the same time and place. Context normally helps to clarify which sense is meant. When speaking to someone in one's own congregation, ``the congregation'' usually means that particular group, as distinct from others. <<It seems as though the congregation has been lax about turning in field service reports on time lately.>>
Congregation Book Study
A Bible study meeting of subgroups within the {congregation}, normally held in private homes. <<The elders would like to know if any family is willing to make their home available as a site for a Congregation Book Study.>>
congregation resolution
See {resolution}.
congregation servant [obs]
Former term for what is now called the {presiding overseer}. The role and responsibilities of this brother have changed radically since the old term was in use. The change occurred in 1972. [yb75 250]
congregation territory
See {territory}.
A contextual relation or association with another person. Jehovah's Witnesses, as a worldwide brotherhood, come to know a great many of each other, including people of all backgrounds. We have been cautioned never to use our connections to the brotherhood for commercial purposes. Drawing the line can be a delicate {matter of conscience}. <<The Slack sisters, Polly and Esther, are throwing a Tupperware party this weekend and have invited sisters from three states.[58]>>
[58] These affairs are not necessarily wrong, but some persons have felt obligated to attend and buy something against their will so as not to hurt the feelings of the hostess.
conscience, conscious
These two words are each often misread as the other. They mean completely different things. Conscience is an internal sense of right and wrong. (Rom 2:15) Conscious is an adjective meaning awake or aware. (1Co 4:4) <<Persons who persist in a course of sin are no longer conscious of their conscience.>> (1Ti 4:2)
conservative, liberal
Terms often misused to describe the inclinations, habits, and views of others. Unfortunately, the frame of reference is usually oneself. To one who views himself as liberal (most do), the term conservative implies one who is overly cautious, needlessly fearful, and resistant to change, but liberal implies generosity, boldness, openness, and flexibility. To one who is conservative the term liberal implies impulsive wantonness, a conscience that is poorly tuned, and laxness about conformance to directives from the {Society}, and conservative implies loyalty, staidness, and a willingness to be self-sacrificing.

NOTE: Fleshly thinking sometimes prods a person to divide up the elder body mentally into what he perceives to be conservatives and liberals. Then when his heart inclines him on a path that may be contrary to wisdom, he may play one against the other in an attempt to circumvent some Bible counsel, or to justify unwise conduct. Or he may seek counsel from one whose {opinions} he anticipates will be most closely aligned with his own. Such behavior could become a catalyst for causing a division in the congregation. (Compare Rom 16:17, 18.)

Text surrounding a passage under examination that may throw light on it. Scriptures that are read without an understanding of their context may be misunderstood and applied. <<The Bible says ``Are you yet holding fast your integrity? Curse God and die!''>> (Job 2:9) The Bible was not recommending this course. The context shows that Job's wife was giving him some very bad advice, which he wisely rejected.
Continue in the Things That You Learned [obs]
The scripturally derived name of a meeting conducted by the {circuit overseer} midweek during his visit, normally the same night as the {Congregation Book Study}. This meeting was discontinued in 1996.[59] (2Ti 3:14) It was customary for the CO to supply a list of questions for research by the first day of his visit, so people could prepare for this meeting. (See also {New Things Learned}.)
[59] Replaced by an additional {service talk}.
continuous auxiliary pioneer
See {auxiliary pioneer}.
contribution box
Any of various containers kept at the {Kingdom Hall} or distributed around {assembly} and {convention} sites, for the purpose of collecting voluntary financial {contributions}. <<In Kiev, Ukraine, the brothers found gold teeth and wedding rings in the contribution boxes.>>
contribution, donation
A voluntary and anonymous financial gift to the {congregation} or to the {Society}. Of course, persons can and do contribute many things besides money. <<In their entire history Jehovah's Witnesses have never solicited contributions by passing a collection plate, as is universally practiced in Christendom's churches.>> Sometimes the Society publishes articles that explain how the work is financed. (See [w94 12/1 13-18], and especially the chart ``How Some Make Donations to the Kingdom-Preaching Work'' on page 19.)
A dispute, usually an expression of opposing views on a matter that cannot be conclusively settled one way or another, often accompanied by the disruption of peace and even quarreling. Significantly, the etymology of the word means to turn against. Christians are urged repeatedly in God's word to maintain peace among themselves. Despite it, some persons cultivate a love for becoming embroiled in controversial confrontations over trivial matters, often with the apparent motive of demonstrating their own dubious intellectual superiority. In extreme cases it has caused proud ones to part from the congregation. (1Ti 6:20, 21) When some ``excessively wise'' guy {pushes ahead}, attempts to tamper with the faith of others, leaves the {Truth}, and then even beats his former brothers in public, over some comparatively minor point, it is the pusher who is the loser. (Ecc 7:16)
A large {assembly} of Jehovah's people, combining congregations from a number of {circuits}. International conventions include small groups of {delegates} and some individual travelers from countries outside the country of the convention's location. <<The Watch Tower Society has sponsored annual two and three day conventions for Jehovah's people throughout the world for many years.>>
conversation stopper
A comment made by a {householder} early in a {door-to-door} encounter that is intended to end the conversation. Sometimes a little discernment and skill enables a {publisher} to step around these responses and continue with delivering the {Kingdom message}. [rs 15-24] At other times, depending on the householder's attitude, it is best simply to acknowledge them and move on to the next door. Some of the most commonly heard objections are:

Advice, especially that which is Bible based, often given directly by one Christian to another. The one giving the counsel does not need sanctioned authority to do so. (Gal 6:1) Sometimes counsel comes to us from reading the Bible, from reading the Society's publications, or from the {platform}. In all cases, where counsel fits our circumstances, whether given directly to us or to a large audience, we should endeavor to apply it.

NOTE: Some persons confuse counsel with council. A council is a group that acts as an advisory body. Even worse is to use the word consul, which refers to a governmental official. In modern times, a consul is one who resides in a foreign country and represents his home country's commercial interests.

counsel point
An item found on the {Speech Counsel Slip}, corresponding to a study chapter in the publication Theocratic Ministry School Guidebook. Students are expected to work on a particular counsel point, or a group of them, when they prepare school talks. <<Sister Slur was working on counsel point 29C, {Pronunciation}.>>
count, take the count
At congregation meetings, assemblies, and conventions, attendants count, record, and report to the Society the number of persons present. Count is often used as a noun. <<``What was the count for the public talk today?'' ``I don't know; someone else was assigned to take the count.''>>
AMOOFL for ``circuit overseer's wife''. :-) <<I hope any COWs reading this Glossary have a good sense of humor.[60]>> Don't even think about what a {service overseer's} wife could be called.
[60] If they are really sheep, they will not be offended. I didn't make this one up myself. Honest!
The general term used to refer to the account in the first chapters of Genesis where Jehovah created the heavens, the earth, and mankind. Though completely in harmony with proven science, this part of the Bible has come to be severely criticized by some who fail to understand it, particularly by those who prefer to believe the unproven and unprovable theory that human life came about as the result of a process of {evolution}. <<We learn much about God's personality by examining creation.>> (Rom 1:20) (Compare {creationism}.)
The teaching that the Bible's account of {creation} in the first two chapters of Genesis is literally true, e.g., that Jehovah created the earth in seven literal 24-hour days. Jehovah's Witnesses believe in creation, but not in creationism. Although Bible advocacy is a fine thing, persons who loudly proclaim creationism as the truth are an annoyance to intelligent people, showing themselves to be both ignorant and bigoted, and do much more to harm the Bible's reputation they claim to defend than to promote it. The Bible's account can be satisfyingly explained in a way that harmonizes completely with proven science. (Compare {creation}, and see the Creation book [ce].)
The Internet Webster's defines crony as an ``intimate companion''. I have seen it used exclusively in a negative context, portraying sycophantic social climbers striving to receive favor from one in a position to give it to them. Every reference I was able to find in my online literature collection uses it that way, and it seems always to be used in the plural, consistent with the image of a person with power, money, or influence followed about by an entourage of lackeys. It would seem inappropriate to speak of ``Jesus and his cronies''. Among examples I found were: <<``Satan and his cronies'', ``the former president's crooked cronies and henchmen'', ``religious cronies'' (twice), ``political cronies'', ``drinking spree with his cronies'' (twice), and ``criminals have cronies who will not squeal''.>> The word may be a borderline {archaism}. I never see it outside the Society's literature. (Compare {henchman}.) A reader tells me the word is in common use in Scotland, without the negative connotations.
Most people in Christendom believe that Jesus was killed on a two-beamed cross, i.e., an upright pole with a horizontal beam attached to it for the victim's outstretched arms. They have made the idolatrous worship of icons representing such a device a central part of their form of religion. The Bible teaches that the instrument of execution was a simple stake. Thus the word rarely comes up in theocratic speech except in discussions of false religious beliefs. <<Persons who wear crosses around their necks should ask themselves: if Jesus Christ had been executed by firing squad or in an electric chair, would people wear little gold rifles or gold chairs as jewelry? If not, then why do they wear what they think was used to torture him to death as jewelry?>>
In modern general usage a cult is a religious group that follows a living leader who promotes new and unorthodox doctrines and practices, normally a small fringe group centered around a single charismatic individual who uses unethical forms of persuasion to manipulate followers. Usually they conduct their operations in secrecy.

NOTE: Although some misguided opposers and ex-Witnesses bent on justifying their leaving the Truth have tried to refer to the organization of Jehovah's Witnesses as a cult, it is obvious that these accusers are uninformed or prejudiced or both. There is nothing freakish about our religion or conduct. We are well-known to society as model citizens, not fanatics. We live and work among the community, maintain the highest moral and ethical standards, show love to our neighbors, and even to our enemies, are well-educated, adhere to the Bible, and claim no man or group of men as leader. (See the outstanding cover series in [w94 2/15].)

current magazine
An issue of The Watchtower or Awake! presently being used in {service}. The following information may have been valid quite a few years ago and may now be bogus, or it may have never been true. I was not able to confirm it, but I thought it was worth presenting anyhow. If any reader has updated information that he knows is true, I would love to hear it from you, along with a reference.

The Watchtower is published on the first and fifteenth of every month, and Awake! on the eighth and twenty-second of every month. A magazine becomes current nine days before its date of publication, and remains current until the date of publication of the next issue. Thus there is some overlap. Given a month where the previous month is a 30-day month, for instance May of 1994, the dates of currency for the month's magazines were as follows:

    Magazine             Begin Current  End Current
    --------             -------------  -----------
    May 1  "Watchtower"  April 22        May  14
    May 8  "Awake!"      April 29        May  12
    May 15 "Watchtower"  May    6        May  31
    May 22 "Awake!"      May   13        June  7

Most people are completely unaware of this schedule, possibly because it's completely bogus. But if real, its purpose is undoubtedly not to set rules about when to place what magazines, but to assist with maintaining order in the matter of publishing them. Any literature we have available may be used at any time to promote {Kingdom interests}.

current offer
The {publication} being featured in the {field ministry} during the current month, according to instructions in Our Kingdom Ministry for the month. (See also {campaign}.)
current truth, present truth
Our scriptural beliefs at any given time. The expression is not intended to suggest that truth itself changes, but that our understanding of it is progressive. (See [jv 121], also the box titled ``Does the Truth Ever Change?'' [w95 7/1 6]) <<It is foolish not to keep up to date with current truth, and dangerous to push ahead of it.>>
custard Christian
A Briticism referring to a Christian who gets upset over trifles, i.e., small and unnecessary things. It is a play on words; a trifle is a British term for a desert made from jelly, fruit, custard, and other goodies.
Another term for {electronic witnessing}. It is a fad among citizens of the Internet to attach the prefix cyber- to almost anything. It is derived from the word cybernetics, the study of comparisons between brain activities and electronic communication systems. Most people haven't a clue what that subject is all about. But a plethora of silly derivatives has flourished, such as cyberspace and cyberfriend, and among Witnesses even the one cited by the headword. Frequent use of these and other tiresome popular colloquialisms is a sign that one is a ``newbie'' (newcomer) on the Internet.[61] I saw a cartoon that portrays a young man in front of a computer reading email, and saying: <<``Whee, I'm whizzing down the information highway! I'm surfing through cyberspace!'' An old timer looking on cynically replies ``You're sitting on your behind in front of a computer.''>>
[61] Or worse yet, what hackers call a ``wannabee'', someone who would like to be thought of as a hacker, but is fundamentally clueless.

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